Landslide cuts off tea, coffee belt link road in Meru

Meru-Githongo-Chogoria road

Vehicles pass along a flooded Meru-Githongo-Chogoria road on November 17, 2020 after River Iraru changed its course.

Photo credit: Charles Wanyoro | Nation Media Group

Transport along a section of the busy Meru-Githongo-Marimba-Chogoria tea and coffee belt link road has been paralysed after River Iraru changed its course following a landslide that occurred in the area early this year.

The Kenya Rural Roads Authority (Kerra) closed the section and warned motorists that it could be swept away by raging water, especially now that the area is receiving heavy rains.

Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi said that the national government will build a new bridge at a cost of Sh100 million.

The bridge connects the agriculturally rich Abogeta West and Igoji West wards. Residents have been asked to use longer routes for their safety as they await allocation of funds for the bridge.

Mr Murungi expressed concern that some motorists are still using the route.

A road sign warning motorists not to use the section of  Meru-Githongo-Chogoria road near Iraru River.

Photo credit: Charles Wanyoro | Nation Media Group

Avoid the road

He said a group of youths had volunteered to dig out rocks under the road where the original bridge stood so that the river can go back to its original course but were informed that the move would make the road to cave in.

“Road engineers have marked the road closed. Please let us obey the rules and avoid the road, it is a very big risk. I urge people to be patient as we wait for the money to be allocated,” he told residents.

The residents had protested that they had been forced to use longer routes while transporting their farm produce.


cwanyoro@gmail.com

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